Sierra Leone will start their 20th edition of the African Youth Championship journey with a two legged tie against West African opponent, The Gambia.
The two nations were paired in the tournament preliminary rounds during Wednesday’s draw which was held in Cairo, Egypt.
The winner of the tie will face Morocco who were given a bye in the preliminaries to the second rounds.
Progress for Shooting Stars will see them host the first leg of the second round tie between May 20th and 22nd with the return match in Rabat between June 10th and 12th and the winner of that tie will entertain the winner between Ivory Coast or Liberia and Guinea Conakry. Like Sierra Leone and Gambia, Guinea and Liberia will first battle in the preliminary round.
This will mark the second meeting between Sierra Leone and Gambia in this tournament. The first was back in 2010 when the Gambians advanced to the next round thanks to their first leg 4-1 win at home in Banjul. The return leg in Freetown ended in a goalless draw which saw the Young Scorpions progress to the tournaments next round with a 4-1 aggregate win.
Shooting Stars were again knocked out of the tournaments 19th edition by the West African heavy weight, the Black Satellites who registered a 4-1 aggregate win from a 2-1 triumph in Accra and a 2-0 victory in Bo, Southern region of Sierra Leone.
The Black Satellites eventually finished in third place at the 2015 championship in Senegal after being defeated by Mali 3-1.